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Are you ready to launch your blogging career? To get started, you will need a content plan and a web hosting platform. While there are countless web hosting companies on the internet, SiteGround is one of the most popular — and for good reason! SiteGround offers fast site speed, reasonable pricing, and excellent customer service. This SiteGround review tells you everything you need to know about the web hosting company.
- SiteGround review: What is SiteGround?
- How to sign up for SiteGround
- Who is SiteGround best for?
- Who is SiteGround not right for?
- Bottom line: Is SiteGround good or not?
SiteGround is a web hosting company based in Sofia, Bulgaria. The company was founded in 2004 and hosts over two million domains worldwide.
Currently, the company has offices in four cities: Sofia, Madrid, Stara Zagora and Plodiv. Although it’s based in Bulgaria, SiteGround offers fast customer support from fluent English speakers.
SiteGround hosting has a lot of outstanding features for bloggers; here are some of the main ones.
Fast loading speeds
If you are a blogger, you probably know content is king. But without speed, great content goes from being king to joker, basically becoming a placeholder on a blog.
Given that there are millions of blogs out there, not many readers have the patience to browse a slow-loading blog. According to studies, at least 32% of readers lose interest in a blog if it takes longer than three seconds to load.
That’s why SiteGround strives to load a site four times faster than its competitors.
Not only does a fast loading speed ensure a good experience for your readers, but it will also be looked favorably upon by Google. Site speed is one factor that Google takes into account when determining site rankings.
In other words, fast site speed = good SEO.
Recommended by WordPress
WordPress, the world’s largest blogging platform, recommends SiteGround to its users. Some additional privileges that come with this kind of endorsement include:
- Exclusive WordPress support
- WP-CLI enabled
- 1-Click staging
- Git access
- Auto updates
If you purchase SiteGround hosting, you can seamlessly install WordPress and start designing your blog.
Excellent customer service
SiteGround offers 24/7 phone support to its users to ensure their sites are running properly. The company also offers 24/7 live chats and support tickets with an almost 100% customer satisfaction rate.
Free daily backups
If you’ve ever lost data, whether in the form of a blog or even a personal device, you understand the importance of routine backups. SiteGround not only offers daily backups for the past 30 days, but they also offer it completely free!
With SiteGround, you do not need to be a tech geek to understand how their user interface works. Everything is straightforward. Besides, if you get stuck with anything, their customer support is always an email or phone call away.
Excellent tools for website building
Like I mentioned earlier, even if you are not a tech-savvy individual, you won’t have a problem building your blog on SiteGround. The company offers easy and fast website building features and resources, including smooth website transfer (if your website or blog is currently hosted elsewhere), and hundreds of collaboration tools.
Powered by Google
SiteGround operates on Google Cloud, making it more reliable and faster than most hosting providers.
SSD persistent storage
If you’ve ever used a laptop that runs on a Solid-State Drive (SSD), you’ll understand how much faster they usually are than those running on standard hard drives. SiteGround uses the same concept for their storage for optimal speed and high-level of redundancy.
Safe and secure
To prevent the risk of attacks and hacking, SiteGround has a team of dedicated security experts who track possible software vulnerabilities both at the website and server level.
Here are a couple of potential downsides of using SiteGround as your blog host.
Limited hosting options
SiteGround assigns SSD space to their users depending on the plan they signed up for. Therefore, if you need more than 40GB worth of web space, this may not be the best option for you.
More expensive renewals
When you first sign up, SiteGround offers 53% off, with plans starting at just $6.99 per month (or less during promotional periods). But at the end of your subscription, you will be charged between $14.99 to $39.99 per month depending on your selected plan.
One of SiteGround’s highest selling points is their excellent performance and speed. The company boasts of 99.9% uptime in terms of performance, and SSD-enabled storage for maximum speed. Besides, SiteGround has data centers in three continents.
Thanks to the streamlined performance and speed, websites and blogs hosted on this platform have a higher chance of retaining visitors compared to many other popular hosting options.
With SiteGround, you do not have to worry too much about downtime but if by any chance it happens, you can always get in touch with their customer support representatives.
Speaking of customer support, this platform claims to offer one of the best customer support systems in the industry. Many SiteGround reviews praise their customer support services, a true testimony of their commitment to keep their customer’s websites and blogs up and running.
SiteGround describes their customer support service as “fast, multi-skilled and helpful.”
In the pros section of this SiteGround review, I mentioned several SiteGround features that make this platform a recommended option for bloggers. However, this section takes a closer look at three key features and explains exactly how important they are for anyone who wants to launch their blogging career.
SiteGround claims to be one of the first web hosting companies to implement advanced speed technologies. Features such as SuperCacher, Cloudflare and Linux Containers are all designed to improve website speed. That’s exactly what this hosting platform provides.
When it comes to security, SiteGround performs health checks on their client’s servers every 0.5 seconds to identify problems and fix them automatically.
This drastically reduces the risk of hacking, downtime, viruses, and other security-related issues. The company also has a dedicated security team that monitors their servers 24/7 to identify potential risks.
To further boost security, SiteGround uses a smart Web Application Firewall (WAF) to watch out for emerging threats and software vulnerabilities and create rules to protect their severs from security breaches.
SiteGround, as an anti-bot system, also blocks up to two million bots and other malicious activities per day, before they get in contact with their customer’s websites or blogs.
This hosting platform comes with several useful tools to improve their client’s experience. They include:
- Backup and restore tools
- Let’s encrypt integration
- Collaboration tools
- Smart WordPress staging
- WordPress starter plugin
- WordPress migrator plugin
When you first sign up to SiteGround, you will be offered three plans to choose from:
- StartUp: This is their cheapest plan and allows you to host one website. It comes with 10GB web space and is ideal for new blogs that have no more than 10,000 monthly visits. Just like the other two options, the StartUp plan comes with free daily backup, unmetered traffic, free SSL, free CDN, free email, unlimited databases, WordPress, 30-day money-back guarantee, and 100% renewable energy match.
- GrowBig: SiteGround claims that this plan is their best seller. The key features are unlimited websites and 20GB web space, which supports 25,000 monthly web visits.
- GoGeek: This is their most expensive plan. It supports unlimited websites, comes with 40GB web space, and supports more than 100,000 monthly visitors.
Here’s a closer look at the three SiteGround plans, their pricing and features.
The sign up process for SiteGround is easy and straightforward. You do not need to be a tech pro to find and navigate the website. Here are the simple steps to follow.
Step 1: Select your service and plan
Go to Siteground.com, and select your service. In this case, select HOSTING from the top menu, and then choose your preferred hosting plan from the three options provided: StartUp, GrowBig and GoGeek.
Note that the StartUp plan is great for new bloggers who are only looking to start one website (and it’s the most affordable).
Click GET PLAN to proceed to the next step.
Step 2: Choose a domain
In this section, you will be required to either register a new domain or provide an existing one. If you are registering a new domain, click on the checkmark next to Domain Registration. The price of the domain registration appears on the screen next to the checkmark.
Choose the domain extension (e.g. .com, .net, .org, .info, .us, among other options), and then click PROCEED to move on to the next step.
Step 3: Review and complete
You will be required to provide additional details for your account at this stage. You need to provide a valid email address and a password.
Under Client Information, fill in the required details, and then provide your payment information in the next step.
Under Purchase Information, you will see a list of services you have purchased, and their prices. You will also see additional services that may be useful to your website or blog. The two most popular extra services include:
Domain privacy: This hides your personal information from third parties.
SG site scanner: This is a monitoring serve that scans your website daily and notifies you if your website has been attacked by a malicious virus or has been hacked.
If you wish to receive special offers, news and other alerts from SiteGround via email, you may tick the checkbox next to that option.
If you are satisfied with the purchase and every detail is accurate, click Pay Now. Your payment will be processed, and a confirmation email sent to the provided email address.
When you receive the confirmation email, click on it to confirm your registration. You will be redirected back to SiteGround to start setting up your blog.
SiteGround is best for both newbie and experienced bloggers whose blogs don’t have an enormous amount of traffic (e.g., lower than 200,000 visitors per day).
More importantly, it is best for bloggers who have no experience building blogs and other tech related platforms but need an easier place to start. SiteGround comes with comprehensive user guides to help them set up their blogs and provides support whenever you need it.
There are millions of blogs on the internet and billions of readers looking for great content. SiteGround understands how important it is to incorporate speed to enhance user experience.
Let’s say, as a blogger, you have a blog that provides excellent content on a specific niche. However, as explained earlier, if it takes more than three seconds to for your blog to load, you could lose up to 32% of your visitors.
To put this into perspective, if you have an online store that receives up to 10,000 visitors a month, you could lose up to 3,200 potential clients every month!
Similarly, you wouldn’t want to wait at a restaurant for an hour to buy your favorite meal if you can get it at a different restaurant within minutes. This scenario can be avoided using SiteGround due to its site speed performance.
Given that SiteGround’s servers are shared, the platform is not the best option for websites or blogs that receive tons of traffic. You shouldn’t be worried about this if your blog is still new and you’re trying to establish yourself in your niche.
You should only get worried if one of your blog posts goes viral and attracts tons of traffic (i.e., more than 200,000 visitors in a single day).
Since the servers are shared, the loading speed of other websites hosted on the same server could drop drastically if one of the websites receives tons of traffic. This mostly happens when a blog post goes viral or the website gets mentioned by a popular website.
If this happens, you will be notified by SiteGround’s administrators that your website has exceeded the visits limit based on your plan. The best option, at such a point, is to upgrade your plan. The web hosting company will not shut down your website at that time.
However, if the traffic keeps rising and you fail to contact support to upgrade your plan, access to your website may be blocked. This is done to prevent other websites that share the same server as you from experiencing slow loading times.
To conclude, I highly recommend SiteGround for new bloggers who want to establish their presence in their preferred niche. This web hosting platform understands how speed and performance influences traffic, and this is the kind of approach you want to kickstart your blogging career.
However, if you have a blog that receives over 200,000 visitors per day, SiteGround is probably not be the best option for you. But for most bloggers, Siteground is a great place to start and allows you to grow a popular (and profitable) blog.
Are you debating between SiteGround and Bluehost to host your blog? Head to our Bluehost review to learn the pros and cons of Bluehost hosting.